Royal Marine plaque goes ‘Down Under’

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A former 45 Commando “bootneck” travelled to Sydney to present a commemorative plaque to the New South Wales branch of the Royal Marine Association.

During a round the world trip, Paul Castle visited the Australian branch of the Association on ANZAC day.

“I was welcomed to the New South Wales Royal Marine Branch and made to feel like part of the family during my stay,” Paul said.

“I marched with them during the memorial service and presented them with the plaque which they were very happy to receive.”

Paul is an active member of the East of Scotland Branch of the Royal Marine Association and had taken with him on his travels a plaque from the Arbroath-based branch to gift to the Australian counterparts.

John W. Lees, secretary of the New South Wales branch, said: “Paul seemed to enjoy his visit here and I would say he enjoyed the ANZAC Day parade on April 25, 100 years since Gallipolli, which is also a Royal Marine battle honour as the Marines were right alongside the ANZACs in the various battalions such as Deal Battalion and the Naval Division.”

Paul also attended one of the monthly meetings and gave members a short discourse of his service within the Corps.

“They reciprocated the gesture by giving me a plaque to take back to Scotland which is now hanging in the British Legion in Arbroath,”

Serving at RM Condor, Paul left the marines in 1989 before continuing with the Royal Marine Reserves.

Travelling west to east Paul visited many locations including a trip to the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbour which marks the resting place of 1102 of the 1177 sailors and Marines killed there during the Japanese attack in 1941.